High Blood Pressure? 10 Food Swaps to Bring it Down

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While blood pressure raises and lowers naturally, sustained elevation -- otherwise known as high blood pressure, or hypertension -- can damage your heart, kidneys, and even brain.

More than 65 million Americans have the condition -- caused by stress, aging, a poor diet, not enough exercise, obesity, smoking, or just plain genetics -- and which can be managed in part by cutting back on sodium, according to the American Heart Association.

The recommended daily allowance of sodium is no more than 2,300 mg -- about 1 teaspoon of table salt -- which adds up fast. These switches -- also good for those who want to maintain low blood pressure -- can help you cut your salt intake without sacrificing flavor.

Trade Salt for Spices, Vinegar, or Fruit Juice

Start by adding fresh or dried herbs and spices -- like rosemary, basil, dill, oregano, hot peppers, thyme -- lemon or lime juice, flavored vinegars, and garlic in place of salt in your favorite recipes.

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